How satisfying to pick a vine-ripened tomato in the heat of a summer day! How about harvesting your own perfect leaf lettuce just minutes before dinner? Or saving big by growing your own organic bell peppers? No matter how much or how little you grow, gardening is such a satisfying pastime! Growing with organic methods, or just old-fashioned gardening, requires a respect for ecology and provides the best nutrition we can afford.
Early this spring, we transplanted some of our unruly strawberry runners into another section of our raised beds. They seemed to adjust easily there. We also found a resurgence of kale from previous seasons and transplanted some of it successfully.
We amended our raised beds this year with some new soil plus our homemade compost and some purchased mushroom compost. I didn’t find time to haul rabbit manure for the garden this year, and it’s too late now since we’re already in planting mode.
We could have planted these spinach seeds even earlier, but at least we have the beginnings of an organic spinach bed. So far, no pest issues, although we’ll need to watch it as the weather warms up.
This will be our second year of growing organic potatoes from a farm in Maine. We cut them into pieces with one eye each and planted those.
My youngest daughter and I started our tomatoes and peppers from seed. She is a veteran now at moistening our sterile potting soil with water, filling the trays, and planting the seeds.
She was enthusiastic about planting her seeds that she’d saved from peppers last year. We got involved in a little journaling about our seed starting project.
My assistant gardener dutifully helped me keep the cells moist and watered our seedlings. Unfortunately, our tray of saved pepper seeds did not grow. Pepper seeds only need to be dried, not fermented like tomato seeds, so I don’t know what went wrong with our dried seeds. We had another tray of purchased seeds that germinated well, and I may have helped a couple of those make their way into her tray…
At long last, we had both pepper and tomato plants growing true leaves and ready to be transplanted and hardened via our little outdoor greenhouse for the outdoors. Just like last year, my schedule didn’t allow me to start these as early as I would have liked.
Next Saturday in the Garden: organic nutrition for seedlings, plus winter’s surprise garden casualty and what to do about it.
For information on Saturdays in the Garden sponsorship packages, contact Anne@FlourSackMama.com.
(Please do not inquire if you are not compatible with open pollinated, non-GMO, organic gardening.)